Wednesday, April 30, 2008

A two question day

We had allotted extra time for this portion of the trip so today was planned to be a 74 mile easy day from Florence to Bandon. However the slight
dry cough that started yesterday has turned in into a wake me up at night hack. Also interesting is that coughing while pedaling up hill makes my quads scream. Yeah I should have gotten more training rides in this spring. Observation: Passing lane ahead really means long steep grade ahead. I saw at least 6 of those passing lane signs. So much for the planned easy day.

Question one: I was stiff and not feeling great this morning and yet as soon as I started rolling I felt much better and during the day I often find myself smiling. Yes I like riding, but the question is why is it so enjoyable?
1 It hurts so good(exercise)
2 endorphin rush
3 some kind of mystic state that clears the mind of all thought
I'd be interested why you like to ride.

Question two: In leaving Coos Bay the shoulder was 18 to 24 inches wide. Way too narrow for comfort on a section of hiway with much traffic.
Do you ride to the right of the white line. Cars and especially the big tired pickups tend to not move over and they drive a couple of feet to the left of the line which is way too close. The other option is to ride a couple of feet to the left of the white line. Now the cars are forced to move over to avoid hitting you. This also is nerve-racking.
What approach do you prefer?

The good news is that for the most part the shoulder has been good.

Because of the bug I've picked up we're in a motel again. I was cold most of the day even though I was wearing my normal winter riding gear plus my rain shell which I rarely wear since it is too warm. Even so our expenses are minimal as we've found that for 8 dollars total we can have dinner and breakfast for both of us. The safeway giant sub goes a long way. Also we had bread, kippered herring and onion sandwiches for lunch.


Day 4 Corvalis to Florence

Another Interesting day. Highway 36 is a quiet scenic route over the coast range. It seems the weather managed all possible options. A half dozen heavy rain squals then warm sun, hail, and cold winds. After cresting the coast range the up canyon wind forced us to peddle down the hill. No rest for us. Again too much rain to camp.

Lunch today was different. The mini market for supplies was limited. We ended up packing hot dog buns, onions and sardines for lunch fixings.


Monday, April 28, 2008

Next time we'll take the elevator

It was another good day. It started with a great breakfast at Berti' Lou's in the Sellwood district. I can recomend the spinach, bacon and blue cheese omlet. Our company included Tristan who used to swim with GLAD and Drew our host from warmshowers. It turns out he rides with the Oregon randos and is signed up to do the SIR cascade 1200km ride. He also has an interesting web site on frame building and folding bikes.
We finally got started on the ride at 9. There were two options we were considering for our route from Oregon City. We chose crossing the Willamette. The other option was to take the city elevator up the bluff and ride to Canby.

The path we chose included a fair amount of climbing to get to Wilsonville. Once the climbs were done going down the central valley got no easier as the headwinds were 15 to 25 all day. This was the hardest day as 11 to 14 mph was the best we could do. They were just locking the doors to the Corvalis pool when we pulled up at at 7;30. It then started raining so instead of camping the super 8 is really nice.


Sunday, April 27, 2008

Day 2

Woke up with the sun at Lewis and Clark park. It must have been lower than the new sleeping bags rating of 40 degrees since I was cold most of the night. Stopped in Longview and bought a cheap fleece sleeping bag to use as second layer. Hugh's road rash didn't slow him down at all. We're spending the night at the home of a member of warm a world wide group that provides bikers showers and back yard or a room for the night. Hugh just finished installing new handlebars with the help of his son Todd, so we're heading out for Eugene in the morning.

day2/99miles/13.87rolling avg/219total

Day One

It was great to see every one this morning to cheer us on. I've been anxious about this adventure for the last few weeks and I think it's been apparent. Within the first few minutes of starting the ride I realized how much I enjoy riding and that it wasn't the distance I was worried about it was the time. This December first Corliss and I will have been married 40 years and this will be the longest I've been away. Also all of the kids are very close. And then there are the 5 grand babies 2 and under. I'll be missing a lot, but this will be an amazing adventure.

Overall this first day went pretty well, though at 57 pounds the bike was tail heavy and a bit wobbly. Of course at 218 so am I. We got in 120 miles and averaged 14.9 mph rolling. The day was longer than planned partly due to a mishap. Hugh took a tumble due to a rumble strip. Bent handle bars, torn shorts and road rash that years from now will provide a memory scar of this ride. He was very lucky it was not worse, though he'll be sore in the morning.

Friday, April 18, 2008

In only 8 more days

I'm not sure whether I'm more excited or nervous, we start the ride in just over a week. My training rides since the last blog update have been less than desirable. Three 30's, one 40, one 50, two 70's and one 80. the 80 was an early season SIR training ride that really was perfection. Great route Conway North to Bellingham and return via Chuckanut dr. - Clear weather and tail winds on the way North and incredibly a wind shift provided tail winds also on the way back. The views from Chuckanut are worth sharing: